Why I'm Going Playstation 4
"If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the results of a hundred battles." - Sun Tzu
For the last year, we (the gaming consumer) have stood betwixt two monstrous forces of technological prowess, uncertain of who may have the superior product, ever being pulled hither and fro as they released luscious tidbit after luscious tidbit. Take heart my gamer brethren, for the time of sweet release is close upon us. In less than a week, Sony’s Playstation 4 will be set forth upon the gaming world, and we can go from passive viewer of trailers to active conqueror of next-gen realms. But which console to choose?
Sure, those basking in the wealth of global economic fortitude (or irresponsible spending habits) will possess both of the delicious reality nullifiers, but I ask why? Why, when both have nigh indistinguishable capabilities, must one own both? I know, I know, exclusives and such, but a minimum of $400 for a couple of games? Tsk, tsk, dear reader.
Which to chose, then? When both stand upon equal footing, the cost of both is a wee-bit high, and the exclusive games seem equally…um, equal, which do you buy?
Sony’s Playstation 4.
Batten Down The Hatches
As some of you may or may not know, Sony has not been doing well since the global economy decided to take a big shit and nature decided to shake the very foundation of the country in which they call home. They lost $6.36 billion ($6,360,000,000…disgusting, isn’t it?) in 2012, cut 6% of their workforce, and sold their US headquarters to a realty company. If you can put aside your hatred for all that is corporate for just a moment, you will see that Sony is in the deep end and looking for a life jacket.
Enter the Playstation 4.
Much like Sony’s gaming platforms have done in the past, the Playstation 4 stands poised to give a much needed boost to the tech-giant. When the console-wars first started, most of us carried the past seven years of 360-dominated thought with us. Sony may have shored the sales gap in the last couple of years, but the hacking of their online service, the difficult nature of developing for their Cell tech, and the oft-maligned DualShock 3 have kept Sony firmly in second place in the minds of gamers.
Despite this, Sony has been maneuvering their battleships into position since the beginning of the PS3’s life. They have been buying up outstanding game developers and incorporating them into their already solid first-party studio lineup: Guerilla Games (Killzone series), Zipper Interactive (SOCOM series), Evolution Studios and Bigbig Studios (MotorStorm series), Media Molecule (LittleBigPlanet series), Sucker Punch Productions (Sly Cooper and Infamous series), and Gaikai (cloud-based gaming).
In 2010, Sony took the leap into the healthcare and biotechnology sector, aiming their sites on developing imaging technologies. I don’t know about you, but I’ve seen Kinect’s impact on the healthcare industry and can only conclude that Sony intends to use their development in such a sector as a remote testing ground for future gaming tech, and vice-versa (ie. Playstation Eye/future motion tech).
Though these maneuverings seem disconnected up close, the proficient use of them during the campaign leading to release has been nothing short of magnificent. A campaign, mind you, that Sony has said “cannot fail,” further accenting the commitment and slight bit of desperation that will be applied to the health of the PS4 throughout its life.
Battle For Your Thumbs
As the latest Presidential campaign proved, throwing more money into advertising than your competitor doesn’t always work. There needs to be more substance than pure slander, more infrastructure than pretty paint. Despite popular opinion, the hardcore gaming community is a rather discerning group of consumers, and Sony played upon said discernment by running a smooth and open campaign.
From the beginning, Sony has kept their focus on the people who put Playstation on the map: gamers. With an indie-developer focused reveal conference ran by the uber-intelligent Mark Cerny (lead systems architect for the PS4), Sony set forth the idea that they are “there” for us, consciously crafting both hardware and software for years to come. In the same breath, they also played upon the competitive nature of gamers by undercutting Microsoft’s “original” next-gen platform release. While Microsoft was busy pushing TV, intrusive cameras, and the death of the used games industry, Sony sat back and let their console, software, and developing talent do the talking for them (sans the occasional direct jab…so awesome).
From that point forward, Sony has stuck to their gameplan, slowly showing off games, answering consumer queries, and giving in-depth looks at what powers the PS4. While they have been doing this, Microsoft has been back-pedaling on all their initial policies and restructuring their hardware just to compete. As a matter of fact, without Titanfall and a tidbit from Master Chief, Xbox One would be in a massive world of hurt.
Rare though it may be, I dig when a company runs a “transparent” campaign. Sony has fielded all the questions that have been thrown at them with a sense of class that Microsoft just cannot seem to match.
Microsoft has approached their fan-base, and the global community, like they were petty children willing to buy crap on a stick as long as it has the “X” on it. (I say this knowing that many of them would/will do just that.) Well Microsoft, you had better have some serious X-mas presents ready for Respawn and 343, because they may be the only reason you still have a hand in this decidedly finished war.
Let me know which console you will be going with below. Thanks for reading.